AMD closes in on Intel with Ryzen 2000 CPUs

AMD recently launched its Ryzen 2000 desktop processors, which offer major improvements over the previous generation.

The Ryzen 2000 chips boast higher clock speeds and better power efficiency at lower prices than the first-generation chips, and have closed the gap with the competition.

AMD has refined its Zen CPU architecture, using a 12nm manufacturing process to bring the performance of its new chips in line with Intel’s 8th-generation desktop processors.

AMD’s original Ryzen lineup revived its ability to compete with Intel in the desktop CPU market, and its new chips bring it one step closer to clawing back market share from the hardware giant.

Specifications and pricing

AMD’s new Ryzen chips compete with Intel’s powerful mainstream chips, offering more cores with better multi-threaded performance at lower prices.

The trade-off is that Intel’s chips boast higher clock speeds and better Instructions Per Cycle (IPC) specifications than their AMD competitors.

Weighing the specifications and pricing, the two CPU lineups are close in terms of performance and price.

It should be noted that AMD’s new Ryzen chips do not have any integrated graphics, while Intel’s 8th-gen Core chips do.

However, all AMD Ryzen CPUs can be overclocked – unlike Intel’s chips which can only be overclocked if they have the “K” suffix.

Ryzen processors also come bundled with powerful coolers, while Intel chips without the “K” branding only include basic air coolers.

The specifications of the new Ryzen 2000 chips are shown below.

CPU Cores Threads Boost/Base Clock Speed Cache TDP Price
AMD Ryzen 7 / Intel Core i7
Ryzen 7 2700X 8 16 4.3GHz / 3.7GHz 20MB 105W R5,449
Core i7 8700K 6 12 4.7GHz / 3.7GHz 12MB 95W R5,499
Ryzen 7 2700 8 16 4.1GHz / 3.2GHz 20MB 65W R4,549
Core i7 8700 6 12 4.6GHz / 3.2GHz 12MB 65W R4,599
AMD Ryzen 5 / Intel Core i5
Ryzen 5 2600X 6 12 4.2GHz/3.6GHz 19MB 95W R3,599
Core i5 8600K 6 6 4.3GHz / 3.6GHz 9MB 95W R3,799
Ryzen 5 2600 6 12 3.9GHz/ 3.4GHz 19MB 65W R2,899
Core i5 8600 6 6 4.3GHz / 3.1GHz 9MB 65W R3,431

AMD Ryzen 5 2600X


AMD’s Ryzen chips traditionally boast better performance in multi-threaded applications, while Intel’s perform better at single-threaded tasks.

This generation is no different, but Ryzen 2000’s single-threaded performance and clock speed improvements have made AMD a formidable competitor this time around.

We used performance metrics from AnandTech’s benchmark database to compare the performance of the competing processors.

Please note that there is currently no information on Intel’s Core i5-8600K and Core i5-8600 in the database, so these chips have been excluded.

CPU Cinebench R15 ST Cinebench R15 MT 7-Zip Handbrake
Ryzen 7 2700X 178 1,801 47,008 1,515
Core i7 8700K 198 1,395 38,777 1,512
Ryzen 7 2700 166 1,534 41,111 1,292
Core i7-8700 194 1,383 38,772 1,514
Ryzen 5 2600X 173 1,377 37,149 1,380
Ryzen 5 2600 162 1,244 35,045 1,194

From this data, it is apparent that AMD has made improvements to its manufacturing process and CPU architecture.

While the boosts offered by the second-generation Ryzen chips are not enough to catapult them into a new performance bracket, they now trade blows with Intel at slightly cheaper price points.

Intel’s chips still offer superior single-threaded performance, but the purchasing decision now comes down to the needs of individual consumers.

Gamers who play CPU-intensive titles may prefer the Ryzen 7 2700X for its better multi-threaded performance, while users who seek the fastest performance across traditional applications might opt for the Intel Core i7-8700K.

Both chip lineups boast impressive specifications and sit at the top of the mainstream CPU bracket.

Now read: AMD’s new Ryzen 2000 CPUs – South African pricing

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AMD closes in on Intel with Ryzen 2000 CPUs